A hockey game has a number of distinct rules, which can be pretty much confusing to understand. If you are viewing a hockey match for the first time, a lot of doubt may arise in your mind about how long is a hockey game and how it is played between two teams.
Need to know all of them? Then just relax a bit and go through the whole article.
What is a Hockey game?
A game of hockey is an outdoor game played by two opposing teams who use sticks that are curved at the striking end. With it, the players strike a small hard ball into their opponent’s goal. A hockey game is usually played between two teams. It has two distinct types: Ice hockey and field hockey.
In the 18th century, the modern game of hockey was first introduced in England. It became very famous among college students within a very short time. The first-ever hockey association was built in the United Kingdom in 1976. After that, different rules of hockey were set and introduced from time to time. The first hockey game was organized and played on 3rd March 1875.
What is Ice hockey and Field hockey:
Ice hockey is a hockey game played mainly at the indoor field in an ice rink by two opposing teams of 6 players each (one goalkeeper and five players playing in the outfield). The players use skates to compete. Puck is used in ice hockey.
Field hockey is a hockey game played outdoors on a greenfield by two opposing teams of 11 players each (one goalkeeper and ten players playing in the outfield). The players use a stick that is curved at the lower end. With the stick, the players strike a small ball hard to put it to their opponent’s goal. Puck is not used in field hockey; rather, they use a small hard ball that weighs between a few pounds. They use a small hardball. Since it is played in a green field, it is called Field hockey.
Differences between Ice hockey and Field hockey:
The difference can be easily identified by each of their names. The game that is played on a field of synthetic surfaces is Field hockey, while the other played on ice is Ice hockey. Besides, there are many more differences based on the number of players playing, from where the two games originated, the game’s length, etc.
The standard length of a Hockey game:
A hockey game is generally played between two teams. Like, every other game in the world, it also has a fixed length. Due to different issues arising in the game, its length may change. Depending on different factors like injuries, stoppage, fighting, etc., the length of a hockey game varies.
For an Ice hockey game, the standard duration is 60minutes which consists of three equal periods that last for 20 minutes each. In between the three periods, two breaks are given consisting of 17minutes each. In this break, the manager and players get a chance to refuel their bodies and rethink their tactics if the game hasn’t gone according to their plan. If the match ties, a 5minutes overtime will be given for play. If the match still scores a level, a shootout will take place.
For a field hockey game, the standard duration is 70minutes which consists of two equal periods of 35minutes each. In between the two-period, a break of 5minutes is given. In this break, the manager and players get a chance to refuel their bodies and rethink their tactics if the game hasn’t gone according to their plan. If the game ties, two equal overtime periods of 7 and a half minutes are given. During overtime, if a team scores, the game ends.
How long a hockey game usually lasts:
According to the rules, an ice hockey game lasts for 60 minutes, and a field hockey game lasts for 70minutes. But since it is just a game and the real players are playing it, it’s almost impossible to maintain the exact time here. On average, a hockey game lasts for 2hours, 10minutes to 2hours 40minutes.
An Ice hockey game is 60 minutes long, and by adding the two periods of 17minutes each in between the 60minutes, it is 94 minutes in total. If overtime and shootout are needed, the length changes.
A field hockey game is 70minutes long, and by adding the 5minutes break given between the two periods, the length increases to 75minutes. If overtime and shootout take place, an average of another 30minutes will pass. In this way, the game length increases.
The actual length of a hockey game changes because, during the game, a lot of time is wasted because of several issues. The game’s length varies depending on factors like stoppages for injury or medical issues, fouls, fighting, etc. Besides, there can be an intermission, overtime, shootout, etc. In this way, a soccer game usually gets longer.
Factors Affecting the Length of a Hockey game:
A hockey game length changes depending on various factors:
A game can be interrupted for a number of reasons. The length of a soccer game increases depending on various kinds of stoppages like- a medical issue, injuries, goals, penalty calls, fighting, etc. The more the play stops, the duration of the game increases.
Sometimes a hockey match ends as a draw after full time. So, to bring out a winner, some extra periods are added to play. Some extra period is given to bring out the winner of the match. If both the teams fail to score in this period, they move to a penalty shootout.
A draw game is when the score of both teams is equal even after the full time. According to the rules, a few minutes of overtime is given if the match is drawn. But in the case of the playoffs, the rule is different. In the playoffs, at first 20minutes, overtime is given. If a team scores a goal and goes ahead, then after 20minutes, the game comes to an end, determining the winner. But, if both the teams can’t score goals in the given 20minutes, then another 20minutes is given with a break between the two periods.
If nothing could separate the two teams, even with overtime, penalties are taken. This way, the length of the game changes significantly.
In an Ice hockey game, a single TV commercial takes more than 45seconds to finish. In each period, there are 3commercials.
Length of a professional ice hockey game:
The rules and regulations of ice hockey are altered almost every year to make the game more exciting. This alteration is also made to ensure the safety of the players and fans.
NHL is a professional ice hockey league where the games are held by professionals. It is played at an indoor field on the ice rink. Like every other professional league, NHL games also last for 60minutes.
The full game has 3equal periods of 20minutes each. If the game draws after 60minutes, an additional 5minutes is given by the referee. If the team still can’t score, the game moves to the penalties. Other factors affecting the length of a professional game are stoppage time, TV commercials, etc. Due to all this, a professional hockey game lasts for 2.5hours or more, on average.
Length of a professional field hockey game:
The international hockey federation alters the rules and regulations of field hockey almost every year to make the game more exciting to the players as well as fans. This change in rules is also made to ensure the safety of the players and fans.
The length of a field hockey game is normally 70minutes. This 70minutes is divided into two equal halves of 35minutes each. In between each half, 5 minutes break is given. If the match finishes as a tie, then overtime of 7 and a half minutes are given. If the team still fails to score, both teams move into the penalties.
Besides the actual timings, the length of the game can vary depending on various issues. On average, a field hockey game takes about 2hours to finish.
Length of college ice hockey game:
A college ice hockey game obeys the rules of a professional ice hockey game. The total time, intermissions, overtimes are the same as the rules of a professional ice hockey game.
The full game has 3equal periods of 20minutes each. If the game draws after 60minutes, an additional 5minutes is given by the referee. If the team still can’t score, the game moves to the penalties. The only exception is that it does not have TV commercials. A college ice hockey game lasts for about 2.5hours, on average.
Length of college field hockey game:
The college field hockey game normally starts in the fall season. A college field hockey game is normally played by two teams having 11 players each. The total time of 70minutes is separated into two equal halves lasting 35 minutes each. In between the halves, there is a 7minutes break for the players to refuel themselves and think about their tactics.
Length of Kid’s ice hockey game:
A kid’s hockey game does not follow the rules of a traditional hockey game. In a kid’s hockey, the total runtime is 60minutes. The play does not stop in this period of time with a whistle or any other affecting factors. Three breaks are given, and the player stops during that time. On average, a kid’s hockey game lasts for 1hour to 1.5hours.
Length of High school field hockey game:
The length of a high school field hockey game is 60minutes. Until 2019, these 60minutes were divided into two equal halves of 30minutes each. But in 2020, a revised rule was established. According to the new rule, the game will be played in 4quarter halves instead of 2, and each quarter halves will last for 15minutes. These rules are actually changed for the welfare and betterment of the players.
After every goal, the game restarts by a center pass. It is very popular in the USA.
Length of women’s hockey game:
A women’s ice hockey game lasts the same as a men’s soccer game. It is 60 minutes long in total with three equal halves of 20 minutes each and two 17minutes breaks between the three halves; if the game ties after 60 minutes, overtime of five minutes is given.
A women’s field hockey game also lasts the same as a men’s field hockey game. A total of 70minuts is played in two 35minutes half, and if the match ties, overtime & penalty occurs.
The rules and regulations of hockey are equally applied to both men’s and women’s hockey. Both men and women must play the game abiding by the same rules and regulations.
The hockey game is one of the most popular games worldwide. Some like to play it on the field, and some like to play it on ice. The big hockey leagues that are organized worldwide are usually played on ice.
The length of an ice hockey game is 60minutes, whereas the length of a field hockey game is 70minutes. If someone asks you how long is a hockey game and how it is played? Then simply, you would answer that a hockey game lasts for about 2hours to 2.5hours depending upon various internal factors like stoppage, overtime, injuries, penalties, etc.
The ice hockey game is played between two teams having 6members each, but the field hockey is played between two teams having 11members each. Both hockey games are famous worldwide, and day by day, the rule and regulations are improving.